With help from WaterAid and local partner organization Work for Rural Health, the community of Tondani in the Salima District of Malawi now has access to a safe water supply and latrines, and they have improved their hygiene.
Their quality of life has improved enormously, as mother of four Emma Frent, 31, recounted:
"I used to draw water from the river seven or eight times a day. My children did not help as they were too young. I used the water for cooking, bathing and drinking. The same water was provided to the animals. I have chicken, guinea fowl and goats.
"The water could give us problems or illnesses. The illnesses were diarrheal illnesses. We had no toilets so we used
the bush and the rain would wash everything from the surface including
the stools into the river.
"The road to the river was bushy, so we could meet with dangerous animals like snakes, leopard and wild pigs.
"At the moment I am having more water than before. I can now mould bricks as it was difficult to get the water from the river for this. We sell some and others we use for building our house.
"My life is better as it's easier to collect water. I have more time to teach my children, whereby that time would not have been found before. Also when we go for farming, we can farm at a good pace. Before we could only spend a small amount of time farming as we were busy drawing water.
"My children’s lives have changed in terms of the availability of water. They can bathe often. When the children were not bathing their skin had a rash, which they would scratch. It was irritating."
Photo: WaterAid/Layton Thompson